Urbina Bay / Punta Vicente Roca

After sailing overnight, we wake up at Urbina Bay located on the west of Isabela Island. This area was suddenly uplifted from the seabed floor in 1954, and we can see evidence of sea worms and crustaceans in the rocks and in coral found during our walk. We follow a flat, sandy trail and are on the look-out for land iguanas this morning. However, we immediately see a young Galápagos hawk in a tree adjacent to our path.  It’s amazing that a group of visitors can stop and photograph such a magnificent bird close-up without it flying away.  Just along the pathway is a Galápagos giant tortoise which we must walk around! And then we see another much smaller giant tortoise. Has anyone remembered we’re here for the land iguanas? Thankfully, as we continue the trail, we are rewarded with 3 or 4 sightings of land iguanas.

During lunch we head to our second landing of the day at Punta Vicente Roca, situated at the top of Isabella. We have the option of a panga ride along the coastline or some deep-water snorkelling. We spot the Galapagos penguin, blue-footed boobies, flightless cormorants, a huge number of sea turtles. The snorkelers are particularly impressed to swim with sea turtles. One of the snorkelling groups are lucky enough to see a huge group of golden eagle rays disappearing into the depths of the ocean. You can’t say that every day!

Back on board, we enjoy a briefing from Daniel about the underwater world of the Galápagos, and he shows us some of his wonderful photos and short video clips taken within the last 24 hours.

photo © Daniel Sanchez